The PhysioProf Conundrum

November 23, 2007

Having been infected by the establish your own scientific eponym meme, I present for your satisfaction the PhysioProf Conundrum.

The PhysioProf Conundrum posits that the amount of time spent in a faculty meeting discussing a topic is inversely proportional to the extent to which discussion can lead to an effectual decision. Huge amounts of time are spent in faculty meetings opining bombastically on the wisdom of already-made high-level administrative faits accomplit. Minimal amounts of time are spent on key decisions such as faculty hiring, promotion, and tenure.

There is also Carter’s Corollary to the PhysioProf Conundrum, which holds that the amount of time spent in a faculty meeting discussing a high-level administrative fait accomplit is directly proportional to how long ago that fait accomplit occurred.

4 Responses to “The PhysioProf Conundrum”


  1. I have witnessed the Q.E.D. to both. If not for the time wasted over the years, I’d thank you for the laugh.

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  2. Schlupp Says:

    You sure it’s not proportional to the square? In both cases.

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  3. neurolover Says:

    But, should we admit that happens because people need a chance to vent about things they can’t do anything about? They presumably don’t talk about the other stuff ’cause they’re comfortable that a decision they can be happy with is going to happen.

    In high school a teacher of mine used to set a timer for this kind of venting (one time after we heard a avante-garde music presentation that involved the plucking and beating of strings on a grand piano. people came to the class with their brains twisted up).

    I guess faculty meetings can’t be run that way.

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  4. lvnWiFi Says:

    use a speed chess timer for fac mtgs!

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